I like to think of those who make a social impact in the world as Purposeful Hustlers.
They are people who know WHY they do something (their purpose), and HOW to get it done (their hustle).
Their Purposeful Hustle is a propelling force that drives them to keep going, to explore all angles of a problem, and to not give up. It shapes the way they choose to move in the world and their ability to actualize their dreams.
Purposeful Hustlers see the world for what it could be.
They learn how to push things out of their heads and into reality. Maybe most importantly, Purposeful Hustlers learn how to do things without waiting for permission.
From my experience, it is clear that Purposeful Hustlers have four key qualities:
The first quality is courage.
It takes courage to overcome the doubt that surfaces when you move against the grain, as is often required to make change.
Purposeful Hustlers have reservoirs of courage they can tap into when they need to focus on their larger calling. They don’t let their fears rule them or direct their decision-making.
Purposeful Hustlers aren’t necessarily fearless, but they know how to make their fears mean less.
Purposeful Hustlers have the courage to take calculated risks in the name of pursuing their passion and making the change happen that they want to see. In the face of adversity, uncomfortable situations or even confrontation, they persist.
In addition to being courageous, Purposeful Hustlers are curious. They are eager to learn more about the world around them. They work to become educated on issues and communities that they care about, and they aren’t afraid to keep learning as they go.
Purposeful Hustlers are not hindered in their work by what they don’t know, but rather they see their knowledge gaps as an opportunity to learn more and do even better work. They value knowledge and gain it along the way.
Purposeful Hustlers know there is always more to learn, so they don’t let the idea of not knowing enough stop them. They embrace the mentality that just because you haven’t done something before doesn’t mean that you can’t try it.
Purposeful Hustlers make moves before they’re an expert, while being humble enough to embrace others’ expertise and ask for help when they need it. They seek out learning experiences, read a lot, listen to those who have the most direct experience with a situation or issue, and immerse themselves in spaces where they can learn more.
Purposeful Hustlers persevere, even when times are tough. They are not intimidated by failure and have built up the necessary muscles to be able to bounce back.
Purposeful Hustlers know that in order to get closer to their dreams, they’ll need to tackle challenges head on. They know that their resilience will be tested, and they’re ready for it.
Purposeful Hustlers are willing to be vulnerable and bring their whole selves into the work. They can withstand the blows that hurt more when they blend their professional lives with the personal work that they care about deeply.
Purposeful Hustlers use their critics as a tool to make their work stronger. They know that setbacks are a reality but that true failure only comes when they give up. They reflect on the emotions they experience when they face obstacles and use those cuts to propel forward.
When things don’t go as hoped for, Purposeful Hustlers dissect what went wrong and re-strategize with the end goal remaining in sight. They lean on others for support, and when they mess up, they admit it, learn from it, own it, and move on.
It requires initiative to make things happen and make change despite lacking the perfect plan, enough time, or enough money.
Purposeful Hustlers do not let these perceived barriers hold them back. They don’t let the fact of not having everything figured out stop them from starting. They know that a plan is important, but that things will rarely go precisely how they thought they would.
They know that they do not need permission to act or to start making change. They do not need a fully fleshed out perfectly-resourced plan to begin the work they feel called to.
Purposeful Hustlers know how to act from their passions, trust their gut, and trust themselves enough to start making moves. They are flexible and can adjust to changing circumstances.
Purposeful Hustlers ask how they can use what they have access to more effectively.
They know the power of sweat equity.
Purposeful Hustlers are innovative and creative but not exploitative. They think non-traditionally about how to get things done.
Purposeful Hustlers are scrappy and not too proud to ask for help. They take action, doing at least one thing each day to stay aligned with their purpose. They structure their calendar to allocate time for purpose-related work.
Purposeful Hustlers are not passive participants in their lives. They take initiative.
Do you have courage, curiosity, resilience and initiative?
Then YOU are a Purposeful Hustler who is capable of making a social impact.
I encourage you to reflect on the ways you can strengthen these qualities within yourself and within those around you as you continue to dedicate yourself to your Purposeful Hustle.
Editor's Note: This post was originally published in October 2018 and has been updated for accuracy and comprehensiveness.